Temple Worship Procedures
Temples are the connecting points of high importance in our religion
and culture. The absolute necessity of the temple worship is stressed
throughout by the great saints of the religion. It is not very difficult to
realize the important role they play in cultivating the spiritualism in
people. It is the place for collective worship. Given these significant
roles of the temples it is required to have some discipline to be followed
in the temples for having the real expected out of the worship. Here are a
few one can follow to set that harmony. Most of these are in general
applicable to all Hindu temples though a few are specific to shaivite
- Going to the temple with a clean body. Legs and hands shall be cleaned
at entering the temple.
- Going to the temple adorned with holy symbols like the Holy Ash,
- Taking something to offer to the Lord. It is an offering out of
devotion. It would be nice if the offering is the one required in the worship.
- Not to enter the temple with foot wear.
- Prostrating in front of the flag column (dwajastaMbham)
(towards the North) on entering the temple.
- Not to prostrate anywhere else in the temple.
- not to prostrate to anybody else in the temple premises.
- Taking the permission of nandi dEvar mentally before
entering His abode.
- Saluting the elephant headed Lord enter the Lord's abode.
- In Lord shiva's abode, engage the mind in the thinking of the
God. Avoid any gossip. Temple is not the place for gossiping. Can sing or
chant His names loudly and sweetly if it would not disturb others. Otherwise
it could be done internally without making noise.
- The Holy ash given as the blessings should be worn saying "shivAya
namaH". It should not be spilled on the ground or wasted.
- It is normally a procedure to offer something to the priest whose whole
life should be in the service of the Lord.
- Circumambulating the Lord saluting the Goddess and the deities in
the temple. The circumambulation would be done at least for three times. On
special occasions like pradoshham the are special circumambulation
methods like soma sUkta pradhaxiNam are followed.
- While in the temple either the Holy five letters or any praise could be
- Before coming out of the temple go to the place of
chaNdEshwarar and take permission for the materials which after
worship are taken out of the temple as blessings. One must not take anything
out in excess and things taken from the temple should be only as the mark of
blessings. If nothing is taken it is the normal practice to wipe (rub) the
hands together in his place.
- Should do something in the promotion of the temple physically or
materially or whichever is convenient and required.
- On coming out of the temple, again prostrate in front of the flag
column towards the north. Sit facing the north and meditate on the God chanting
the Holy five letters.
- While inside the temple should not make the place dirty in any way or
make any noise.
- Going to the temple at least once in a week with the family.
The mind should be focussed on the Lord like the dust of iron that
stick to the magnet. A worship with such an orientation would have very
good effect in us by the grace of the Almighty.
1. soma sUkta pradaxiNam
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